Rodrigo Bentancur has revealed he was nervous about joining Juventus and describes teammate Cristiano Ronaldo as an animal in training.
The Uruguayan midfielder joined the Bianconeri in April 2017 but has really shone this season.
“When they told me about the possibility of coming to Juventus I panicked,” Bentancur told DAZN.
“I was very happy, but also very scared. I thought: ‘now I have to go to Italy, with only my father, leave my family, learn Italian… how am I going to do it?’.
“In the end I was very happy, but also a bit scared.
“From the first time I entered the Juventus dressing room and saw the faces of my teammates I understood one thing: you win here, and that’s it.
“Everyone calls me Lolo, because when he was young my little brother couldn’t pronounce ‘Rodrigo’. He said ‘Loligo’, so it stayed ‘Lolo’.
“As a child I was much taller than the other children, at least an extra foot, so after every win the fathers of the opposing team would ask me for documents to prove my age.
“Why the number 30? It’s the number I had at Boca Juniors, and I asked for it when I arrived in Turin. It’s the day my mother was born. She watches me and brings me luck from up there.
“Before I came I talked with the Juventus staff, it was like I did an 18 month pre-season. I was very thin when I arrived, now I’ve gained 6kg of muscle mass.
“Ronaldo? I met him at the World Cup in Russia.
“We met in the anti-doping centre after Portugal-Uruguay. He recognised me – or so he said – and he called me by name. I couldn’t believe it.
“Then the first time I saw him train here in Turin I thought: ‘he’s an animal!’. The way he trains is exceptional, he always gives 100 per cent.”